I meant to finish this post before summer officially left us, but, well, the best laid plans of mice, men and Oreos oft go awry. Now that the Oreos of summer have gone... well, I'm still going to tell you about them.
On its face, the S'mores Oreo makes the most sense of the lot. Oreo already has a decent graham cookie base that they've been trotting out for many novelty flavors, and it is of course ideal for this application. That said, it's still a graham Oreo, not a graham cracker, so the wheaty graham flavor and crisp cracker texture are not nearly as present here as in the geniune article. Now, I've actually never been a huge fan of graham crackers, to be honest. They were always the weak (healthy) link in a true (melted-candy-laden) s'more, but yet I find that in the Oreo version, I miss the wheaty-crispy contrast more than I thought I would. Everything in this Oreo is very yielding and sweet, and while there's nothing surprising or necessarily wrong with that... I mean, it is an Oreo after all... it just made me pontificate a bit on what's so beautiful about the real campside version, which of course can't be recreated here.
Inside this Oreo is a double layer of creme: a layer of marshmallow-flavored creme topping a layer of chocolate-flavored creme, mimicking the physical structure of a real s'more. This is cute, and these flavors are certainly non-controversial and tasty. My tasters all liked these, and some even generously insisted they could taste a toasted note to the marshmallow flavoring.
For having two different cremes, however, the filling is surprisingly thin - this Oreo actually had the thinnest profile of any released this summer (about half what is stuffed inside the Swedish Fish flavor, for example). The marshmallow and chocolate layers do not individually reach to the edges of the cookie, as the illustration would make it appear. Instead, each reaches only most of the way across, forming a sort of swirl that results in only marshmallow white showing from one side, and only chocolate brown showing from the other. This is a rather curious choice for a flavor where the filling should be the indulgent star of the show. We want more!
Which brings me to my only real complaint - not enough chocolate. With such a meager amount of chocolate-flavored filling, and that flavor being relatively mild, I simply wanted more. Perhaps Oreo could have beefed up the chocolate flavor by using one chocolate wafer and one graham, but of course that would mess up the aesthetics of this cute visual pun on a s'more. Therefore, dear reader, I offer you this serving suggestion: dip these bad boys into a cup of cocoa. I tried this, and yes, it does sog out the cookie pretty bad - more even than dipping a regular Oreo into milk, because warm liquids have more dissolving power than cold liquids do. However, what the wafer promptly loses in texture, the filling gains, because the warm cocoa makes the marshmallow and chocolate creme layers melt a bit. Now THAT is what a s'more is all about, my friends. Add to that the extra boost in chocolate flavor from the cocoa, and you've got a summer-winter mashup that's worth doing.
Blueberry Pie Oreos
Admittedly, I did not have high hopes for the Blueberry Pie Oreo. One look at the purplish-gray color of the thick creme interior, and I was pretty sure I was going to taste something that was more reminiscent of a scented Mr. Marker from kindergarten, rather than a baked good or jammy summer fruit. I was not wrong.
The purple tint initially had me wondering if I was tasting "grape," but after a split second the flavor of artificial blueberry was unmistakable. It tasted not like berries at all, but reminded me more of a bath product or a body lotion that one might give to a little girl, with a scent name like "Bubbly Blueberry" or something. When I was a kid in the '80s, my sister and I played with little rubbery-plastic Strawberry Shortcake Doll figurines that were intensely scented with fragrances like this. In fact, as I recall, Strawberry Shortcake herself had a little blue-haired friend whose name was apparently Blueberry Muffin, the poor thing. She had purple freckles and smelled exactly like this tastes.
The good people at Oreo have put this on the long-suffering graham Oreo base, although that fact is not prominently displayed on the package as it is with other flavors. This is their go-to "pie crust flavor" trick, even though real blueberry pie is always made with a traditional pastry crust, not a crushed graham cracker crust. One of my tasters pointed out that the combination of graham and fake blueberry results in an overall flavor not unlike a blueberry Nutrigrain bar. Another was reminded of a blueberry Pop Tart. Both observations are accurate. While these foods aren't necessarily bad, they aren't super tasty, either. Which pretty much sums up this Oreo.
Key Lime Oreos
**Note: because I have the memory of your average goldfish, I apparently reviewed Key Lime Oreos twice. I knew I had originally tasted them in 2015, I just forgot that I had reviewed them then, as well. So for this review, I approached them afresh, as it were.**
I liked the idea of this Oreo because I am a total sucker for Key Lime pie. However, that also raised the bar on my expectations. I like a Key Lime pie that really punches you in the face with pucker, but makes up for it with the sweet kiss of custardy smoothness, a richly buttery graham cracker crust, and the offsetting dairy whisper of fresh whipped cream.
I was encouraged that the appearance of this Oreo was at least somewhat on point. The bright yellow-green of the creme did veer towards the shade of a neon windbreaker I once owned in the '90s, but I have seen key lime pies that were similar. Not great ones, of course, but the equivalent of a Mrs. Smith's pie in the freezer section of the grocery store. (And, let's be honest, I would totally hit that.) And it least it wasn't dark lime green, which meant that somebody was thinking at least a little about the lighter, brighter shade of key lime juice. Also, this Oreo is - of course - on the graham cookie base, but here, that makes all the sense in the world, as a key lime pie is always served in a graham crust, and it is a perfect complement.
When you open the package, there is a wave of bright, tangy lime aroma. It perhaps suggests margarita mix more than key lime pie, but that's acceptable as well. The first bite is equally bright, with a pleasing amount of tartness. I had been afraid that Oreo would pull its punches on the lime flavor, offering instead an insipid, bland sweetness, but this is not the case. It is not quite the full punch of lime pucker that true masochists like me desire, but it cannot be said that the lime flavor here is shy.
There is just one problem. After a moment, the aftertaste kicks in. My tasters insisted that this suggests a lime-scented kitchen cleaning product. At first, I resisted this characterization, because I was enjoying the fact that these Oreos did taste initially like what they were supposed to taste like, so they could definitely have been worse. But after awhile, I had to concur. I would still sum these up as "better than they have a right to be," but considering that they are Ecto-Plasm green, maybe that's not saying much.